I was born on a farm outside Columbia, Missouri, and had a pretty idyllic childhood. I don’t mean I was staring wide-eyed in wonder at the stars at night or taking a deep breath of pure country air while skipping joyfully through fields of grain and breaking out into “Oh, What a Beautiful Morning.”
No, it wasn’t easy. We worked our asses off, pretty much as soon as we could ride a horse, carry a bucket of feed, or climb on a tractor.
But I had a good family that took care of me, got me a good education, and instilled a strong work ethic that always served me well no matter how crazy I got, and, coming of age in the late 1960’s, things got a bit wild. For some, it was peace and love, for others it was sex, drugs, and rock ‘n roll. It was all of the above for me.
By the time I could legally take a drink, I’d done extensive research into all kinds of mind-altering substances and hitch-hiked to the four corners of this country and on down to South America. My public school education was good enough that I could handle the classwork at Amherst College in Massachusetts, and later in graduate school at the University of Texas, but it seemed like school was just background noise until my wife got pregnant and I found responsibility. Some people find Jesus, I think responsibility’s better.
My passion as a hippie was literature, Latin American fiction more precisely, until fatherhood at age thirty turned me serious and I switched to electrical engineering. Getting an MSEE in telecom systems, I worked in systems engineering, international sales and executive management in California, Atlanta, and South Florida for thirteen years, caught the startup bug and was a tech entrepreneur for another thirteen. I didn’t make it big but I did make it bust, so I went back to work for the man for a few years before dropping out to pursue my passion.
During my pre-professional days, I travelled extensively throughout South America, smoking dope and learning Spanish and Portuguese. I fell in love with the magical realists–Garcia-Marquez, Vargas Llosa, Guimarães Rosa, and more. Eventually, I had to try my fingers at a keyboard.
There are a lot of stories rolling around in my noggin, some about me, some not. I did a lot of wild and crazy things; I did normal things that are funny, or sad. I have a vivid imagination, and I enjoy telling a good story. I certainly hope you enjoy hearing one.
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